August 1, 2012

(Rabbit, rabbit, friends. It’s the first day of a new month. It’s also the first piece from my new novel which is about a strange town, strange people, and strange gods. In other news, this Saturday, August 4th, I’ll be reading at the Boog City Poetry and Music Festival. My reading is being held at Unnameable Books, 600 Vanderbilt Ave, Brooklyn, NY and starts around 5:00 pm. Also, it’s free admission, although since it’s being held at a bookstore, how about purchasing a bit of fine literature? You don’t have to but it would make some authors very happy. I’ll be reading pieces from Organ Meat, Killing Me and it’d be great to have an audience.)




     (((the mouthless daughter))) i want to be scared. i want something with a dead mouth and lobster claws to sneak up behind me and yank my spine out of my neck. i want a hand to jump out of a teacup. i want to come home and see my leather mother stuffed into the shower drain in the kind of position that leaves her mouth near the top of the opening. i want cabinets to open on my knees. i want teeth to drop out of the sky. i want to be mauled and cooked and flayed and i want to suffer scars but survive everything. i think about this while cutting toast into tiny squares. my leather mother watches me. [how are you today, she smiles.] [very well, i smile.] [do you love me, she smiles.] [no. i hate you, i smile.] i crush the toast against the plate and crumbs cover everything. i want crumbs to rise like ticks and bite my hands open. i want my tongue to poke through the rotten skin to get at the blood source within. i want to suffer while my leather mother beats her knees against her eyes and lets rancid worms out of her brains. i want to find my plastic father on a crucfix in the basement, a plastic bag arranged around his face with just enough bleach poured inside to burn his mouth. and i want him to still be alive and screaming as the bleach eats away at his tongue and i want to see this and cry because he is half-dead and i am stuck with the murderer. i drop my toast pieces onto the floor and walk away. [i want to be scared, mother, i yell.] my mother slams the oven door closed. [and i want my marigolds to be another color, she says.] she slams the oven again. then she disappears into a wall. i don’t pay attention to my mother. she walks with her knees pressed against her tongue and when she is nervous, she chews on her elbows and i know she is angry at her marigolds and a man with a rubber gag over his mouth sneaks into the house when i’m not home and he crawls over her but i’m not supposed to know that and i don’t care about any of it because none of it frightens me. let her have her rubber gags and her stupid marigolds. i want a horror show. [i can show you something scary, the sewerage god says.] i look up and i am scared because i was just inside and now i am outside and i don’t remember opening a door but the sewerage god is in front of me. [how do you know i want to be scared, i ask.] the sewerage god smiles at me. it is an ugly smile, filled with rotten yellow teeth and it smells bad but i am interested. i am very interested. [all little girls want to be scared, he says. every little girl wants a shadow to come creeping up the stairs. and some little girls want to be locked in a dark bathroom. and others want to get stuck inside a window. and even more think about eating the wallpaper to get at the little crawlspace in the rock behind.] i step towards the sewerage god and roll my eyes. i kick a rock. i keep a smile on my face but that’s not hard to do. i think my face would deflate if i didn’t smile. everyone’s heads would explode. brain and carnage everywhere. i’d have to swim through organ meat to get to school. the sewerage god places a heavy green hand on my shoulder. [i can make you scared, he says.] [i have to go to school, i say.] [no, you don’t. you want to be scared, he says.] [maybe i do, i say.] [then come with me. i have just the place, he says.] so i go. i follow him down many streets and behind dozens of houses and when he steps over a stone, i step over a stone, and when he blows his nose, i blow my nose. and then we are on the front porch of a broken house and this can’t belong to the field of smiles. [look inside, the sewerage god says.] he gestures at the windows. i press my forehead against the glass and stare through the film. [whose house is this, i ask.] i watch the sewerage god’s reflection shrug. [no idea, he says.] he steps closer. he presses a hand against my knee and then i feel his erection against the small of my back. [keep looking, he says.] i stare into a dark living room. the wind blows around me. grass rustles and i move from foot to foot, wood creaking below me. [keep looking, he says.] a shadow comes down the stairs. i narrow my eyes. it moves with a rocking gate, shifting from one knee to the next, then dropping against the railing. i blink and the shadow is gone. i pull away from the window. [it’s a joke, i say.] the sewerage god pushes my head against the glass. [keep looking, he hisses.] i push against the glass but he’s stronger than me. the shadow comes out of the hallway, moving towards the living room. it zips to one side, then moves backwards, limbs rotating around its head. i strain against the sewerage god’s hands. [i don’t like this, i moan.] [you wanted to get scared, the sewerage god shouts.] he pushes my head against the glass harder. the shadow rolls past the window and darts up the stairs, legs pressed together as its body slides over the railing. i moan into the glass but my smile won’t fall no matter how hard i will my cheeks to relax. i smile as the shadow glides back down the stairs and hobbles into the living room. then i scream, because the shadow is transparent and when it pauses in front of the window to stare at me, i see myself through its stomach.

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